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Legend Valentino as Rossi as ever!

NEW men and machines may have come, but Valentino Rossi’s charisma does not seem to fade.

Right from the pre-event show when he traded his bike for a gun with Qatar’s champion skeet shooter Nasser Saleh Al Attiyah to the post-race Press conference where he jovially asked journalists whether it was not time for them to hit the bed, Rossi always ensures his share of limelight.

And his response to a surprise third-place finish was typical of the legendary rider.

“If I had to bet on me getting a podium in this race, I wouldn’t! We tried 3-4 settings. I didn’t know what happened, but I was feeling good on the bike. I hope we understand enough in this race to continue in this way,” said Rossi, who had started 10th on the grid.

Not much was expected from the Italian following his pre-season struggles, but ‘The Doctor’ surprised everybody including himself.

With four laps to go, Rossi set his personal best time of 1:56.398sec and looked threatening, but he was unable to push further due to tyre wear and settled for third, which gave Yamaha a second podium finisher.

“I’m very happy to start the season like this because the podium is always better, especially since it’s coming after a difficult period. We’ve to continue like this,” said Rossi.

“This result is very good for us. My secret is my team, it’s Yamaha. We never give up and always keep up our concentration. I always feel the support. The trust from all guys around me is great. We know our potential. Sincerely, when I was in the top five, I already said “this is OK”, but arriving on the podium is something even better,” he added. 

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